Texas Sen. Menéndez Calls For Euthanasia As A Last Resort

Texas Sen. Menéndez Calls For Euthanasia As A Last Resort
No Kill Nation/Facebook

Correction: The Association of Shelter Veterinarians believes there are instances where trained professionals should carry out veterinary care, like vaccination, emergency care and pain management, among other things, in the absence of a veterinarian. We initially reported that ASV's stance was that only licensed veterinarians may administer medical care for animals. We regret the error.

The ASV strongly believes that there are many instances where veterinary care should be carried out by trained professionals in the absence of a veterinarian - specifically vaccination, emergency care, and pain management - among other things.

Senator José Menéndez seeks change in animal shelter procedures after a Bexar County resident’s dog escaped her backyard and was euthanized only days later.

Menéndez’s bill structures specific guidelines for shelters, stating cities with populations of 500,000 or more may only euthanize an animal after every cage has been filled.

Texas Sen. Menéndez Calls For Euthanasia As A Last Resort
State Sen. Jose Menendez/Facebook
Supporters of the No-Kill Movement, including Larry Tucker of Austin, attribute the constituent’s incident to current regulation.

According to the Association of Shelter Veterinarians, in the absence of a licensed veterinarian, trained professionals may administer medical care for animals including individual care, intake vaccination, emergency circumstances, and pain management.

Shelter staff legally may euthanize an animal without the presence of a veterinarian.

Many non-profit animal shelters struggle to obtain the necessary money to pay a full-time veterinarian, leaving euthanasia a viable option for shelters with a steady intake of animals.

San Antonio Animal Care Services voices concerns that the bill might lead to overcrowding and failure to comply with the national standards of care.

Menéndez hopes not to restrict the operations of animal shelters, merely to prevent animals from dying that should not. According to the Senate Research Center, currently 700,000 animals are euthanized in Texas animal shelters each year.

The No Kill Movement lawyer, Ryan Clinton, states his support for the bill in a Facebook post, “It aims to be better, more humane, and yes, oftentimes cheaper than traditional sheltering. In this way, it is what Uber is to the cab industry.”

Whether the ‘Uber’ of animal shelter regulation will prevail in the senate is yet to be seen.

The fiscal review of the bill states economic impact for local governments depends entirely on the amount of strays and amount of space available to shelter these animals.

The report states that of the 2,428 animals brought to El Paso shelters last year, an average three day stay costs $30 to care for the animal, $16 to euthanize the animal and approximately 95 percent of the animals are euthanized.

However, El Paso County reported that the bill wouldn't have a fiscal impact.

For more information on the bill visit  No Kill Nation, Inc. on Twitter, No Kill Texas on Facebook.

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